Member Stories
Member Story - Steve
Interviewed by Hannah, Marketing & Engagement Manager

Steve has just found long-term, stable work. He’s delighted (as you can imagine)! It’s taken two years of countless applications and painstaking determination but he’s finally got there.

Steve had a successful career in IT before he committed the offense. He lost his job which he thought was an ‘understandable reaction’. Although he successfully found another job, he was let go again when his conviction went to court. He was sentenced to 60 hours community service.

After this, he started to apply for work again. He describes how long, and how challenging, the job search was:

“You can be having a really bad day – applied for loads of work in the morning, not heard anything… You get an email saying ‘thanks for submitting’ and that’s all you hear. It can get depressing.”

It wasn’t an easy road for Steve, rebuilding his life and starting over. Getting a conviction really ‘shows who your friends are’.

“It’s tough, an instant change on your life. People who have known you for years look at you a different way. Your roots are people who are there for you all the time, the branches are supportive but have the potential to break off, and the leaves are those who will just blow away.”

Asking him about his experience with Clean Sheet, Steve said that the support had been a real lifeline for him:

“…You get a phone call and it’s Clean Sheet checking in to see how you’re doing. They’re enthusiastic and asking what they can do to help. It’s great to feel like someone’s on your side.”

“Sometimes it was funny that just to have that call to see how you’re getting on – you know the help is there if you need it. They found me some training courses, they got me onto my CSCS and a CCDO as well. This was when the lockdown was kicking in so we did it over Zoom. They were always popping up with ‘Have you seen this job? Is this any good?’ It’s that kind of boost to you.”

“Obviously you get people on your side like your family, but just having someone to give you a boost every now and then just to brighten you day it makes you say ‘right let’s go again, let’s get back on the Directory [Clean Sheet’s Employer Database].’”

Eventually, Steve found work with a stock taking company, where he has now been working for almost three months. He told me how he’s welcomed the change of pace from his history in IT. Steve’s advice for others is to take every opportunity and to give it a go:

“You might not get any feedback, but you can’t give up. You won’t get anywhere if you don’t put the work in, and hopefully at some point you’ll get rewarded for the effort. Use the support network that is there, and try everything you can.”

*name changed to protect identity

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